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A thought for the New Year

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A thought for  the New Year

There is a very insightful story from the life of famous singer Tansen. He was the court singer of Emperor Akbar and one of the nine jewels, the Navratna of the court. Such was the singing prowess of Tansen that many seemingly impossible feats would be performed by his melodious music and songs. The legend goes that his popularity was far and wide and there were no challengers. During the same time there was another equally good emerging singer and musician named Baiju Bawra. Baiju wanted to be a better and more famous singer than Tansen, but could not attain the same recognition. He, in frustration, decides to eliminate Tansen so that he could become Numero Uno by default. With this in mind he one night sneaks into the bedroom of Tansen with intention to kill. But as he was about to strike the fatal blow with his knife,Tansen wakes up. Surprised as Tansen is, he asks Baiju who he is and why he wants to kill him. Baiju says that he wants to be the best singer of his time and it was not possible as long as Tansen was living. Tansen, then, gives a pithy piece of advice to Baiju saying that if he wants to kill Tansen the best way is to create love and compassion in his heart. Tansen will be finished without any bloodshed. Baiju takes the lesson to his heart and practices with full dedication, without hatred and ambition and later on beats Tansen in a widely touted duel. The authenticity of this legendry tale and its historicity may be questioned, but not the significance of the message. It is love and compassion of the heart that goes into the composition of great music. Success does not come from ambition and envy. It comes from love and dedication. As we look back at the year 2017 on this last day, we find that a lot of hatred and violence has gone by. And on flimsiest of the reasons. Let us look forward to the year 2018 with love and compassion in our hearts. There is a popular saying that if you sow wind you will reap whirl wind. India has witnessed a lot of violence, hatred and strife in its formative years and there is little room for any more. A resolution, then, for the New Year is very much is order. Let the coming year be a year of love and compassion, camaraderie and peace — a marked departure from the year that was. Hatred and violence have never and will never solve the problems of mankind. It is love and compassion that makes the human society peaceful and liveable. History suggests that Indian subcontinent has seen world’s greatest votaries of love, compassion and peace. The land of Buddha, Mahavira and Gandhi must once again take the lead in dissemination of the right message for mankind. The previous century saw death and destruction in large numbers due to ambition and hatred. Let the present century be oriented towards love. And what better day to call it a day for hatred and strife than today,the last day of 2017. Let there be a new beginning tomorrow as the New Year dawns. Human beings are born with three basic emotions of love, hate and rage. We need to emphasize love and suppress the other two. Only love and compassion can make this world liveable and lovable.

The writer is a Professor of Management at IIT (ISM), Dhanbad. He can be reached at




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